Watercolorist JK Dooley paints “exceptional cowboy art.” Enjoy her portfolio, and see more from this talented artist by visiting her website.
What are your goals?
My goal as an artist is to make a great living doing what I love to do. When people buy my art it tells me they love it, and want it to be a part of their life.
That’s quite an honor, and it inspires me to put my heart and soul into each piece I create. I am grateful for this gift from God and strive to honor Him by creating the best art possible.
What are you working on now?
I have three watercolors in progress. I always work on 2-3 paintings at a time. If I get stuck on a certain area on painting #1, I can move to #2. By the time I get back to #1 whatever I was stuck on seems to have resolved itself. I’ve learned through experience that if I paint frustrated, the image will suffer.
I’m also creating a line of fabric collages featuring my paintings and vintage cowboy pictures. I’m blending different fabrics and textures, rhinestones, rust and other fun items to create one of a kind wall hangings.
I work from photos I take. I don’t shoot the picture with any composition in mind, I wait until I see the shot. Then I’ll decide if I want to use the entire photo, or tightly crop it to get a pleasing composition. I chose watercolor because I was unable to conquer oils or acrylics, and watercolor came quite easily to me.
I created the bold watercolor technique I use out of necessity; I felt rough and tumble cowboys needed a bolder look than traditional watercolor offers. Initially, my preferred media was black and white pencil. I moved on to colored pencil, then progressed to watercolors.
I layer each individual color to achieve the desired effect. This allows the colors to remain clean and sharp. I scratch into the paper with sand paper to create a worn leather look, and use other tools to get other effects. Once I accidentally spilled my coffee on an image; sent me in a different direction than intended, and created the need to come up with yet another technique to cover my spills!
I choose not to paint peoples’ faces. If the painting features an animal and a person, I prefer the viewer interpret the emotion of the picture based on the animal’s expression. It also allows people to place themselves or friends/family in a scene. I often hear ‘That looks just like my daughter’, or ‘That’s grandpa!’ I love hearing those comments!